This uniquely shaped private residence by Tom Wiscombe Design consists of two main components – the crystal figure and the pedestal. The crystal figure is a strong statement design, containing semi-public functions of the house, such as living, dining and kitchen area. The pedestal is supporting figure and contains private functions – bedrooms and studios. Inspired by two-part Brancusi sculptures, two shapes inter-operate, but retain their own character. However, the connection seems weak at the first glance, therefore allowing the crystal figure to appear to float.
The very fragile relation between transparent and opaque is a critical site of speculation in this project – it had to be investigated how to retain the mass effect despite the significant change in material. For that purpose, 2d unfolded drawings were used as an operative base, in order to find a way to smoothly blur the edges. The solution was in pattern of loops and lines on opaque surfaces become patterns of standing seams and deep black channels, like tattoos, which are carved into the skin with chisels rather than drawn on smooth skin with needles. Therefore, views out from inside the living room are not pure but heavily mediated.
In order to perform the continuity in the material, composite sandwich panels in which the crystal structure is clad are never separated at building corners or silhouette edges. Component joints are glued on site, to avoid indexing processes of manufacture. Highly synthesized architectural effect is achieved, from what at first appeared to be the tectonic expression of the piece.
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